Yes, I know there haven’t been many posts lately. I’ve been busy. And until someone wants to pay me for this blog, then my job security will need to be priority number 1. No mom, no one has complained.
With all of that being said, can anyone explain to me why we need a mosque near Ground Zero? I know I’ve asked before, but with the recent acceleration of the issue, I’m asking again. And no, I’m not questioning whether one can be built there, obviously it can be. But why should it be built there? What’s the point? Is this really the best place to prove that we, as Americans, are tolerant of everyone?
And what are the motives of the muslims building the mosque? Peace and understanding? B.S. You could have the same peace and understanding if you built it somewhere else. And no, your right to practice your religion is not being inhibited in any way by making you build the mosque elsewhere. Moreover, if your real motivation was truly a thing of butterflies and kittens and pretty rainbows and dew-drops, why give it a name that basically means muslim conquest? I’m not sure that forcing a mosque down the throat of a majority of New Yorkers, and Americans, that don’t want it speaks of tolerance.
And what does this have to do with our esteemed president, you ask? Well, on Friday, he said this:
In his speech on Friday, Mr Obama said: ‘Let me be clear: As a citizen and as President I believe that Muslims have the same right to practise their religion as everyone else in this country.
‘That includes the right to build a place of worship and a community centre on private property in Lower Manhattan, in accordance with local laws and ordinances. This is America, and our commitment to religious freedom must be unshakable.’
As one could expect, that went over like a ton of bricks. If the Republicans win back the House (and possibly Senate) this fall, a thank-you letter should be sent to the president.
House minority leader John Boehner’s response,
‘The fact that someone has the right to do something doesn’t necessarily make it the right thing to do. That is the essence of tolerance, peace and understanding….’
Say what you want about Boehner (I tend to like him), but he’s absolutely right (except that I don’t think they have the “right” to do it). If the muslims attempting to get this thing built want to show how much they love everybody, then they should share their love elsewhere. The people don’t want it, period; and with good reason. Lest we forget that it was muslims who brought the twin-towers down, in the name of their religion. I don’t care if they were “radicalized.” They weren’t Christians, or Catholics, or Quakers.
Simply put, there’s no justifiable reason for the mosque to go there. In fact, the mere fact that the builders want to put it there reveals their own insensitivity. Of course, I’m not dumb enough to think those building the mosque are doing so with good intentions.
Question: what would happen if, after a small group of Christian Americans set off a bomb in the middle of Mecca because they wanted to start another Crusade, another group of moderate Christians wanted to build a church near the site of the bombing to send a message of peace and love? Well, it’s actually a trick question because non-muslims aren’t allowed in Mecca. That fact notwithstanding, even if the moderate Christians were granted the opportunity to build the church, I would give it about a week before some “radicalized” muslims bombed it into oblivion. And how would the American left respond? Likely how many responded to 9/11: it’s our fault and we should work to understand their grievances. We’re destroying ourselves, and our esteemed president is leading the way.
Well, it’s official (again). Liberalism doesn’t work. Take Obama’s National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform for example. I’m not entirely sure why the president would form this Commission, since if it had any credibility at all, it would have to say things that reflected poorly on the president. And its saying them. Commission chairmen Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson recently spoke at the National Governors Association about the state of government spending.
Simpson said the entirety of the nation’s current discretionary spending is consumed by the Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security programs.
Now, here’s a quick government lesson, since the language cited above isn’t particularly clear. There are two types of federal government spending: discretionary and mandatory. Mandatory spending largely consists of three things: medicare, medicaid and social security. It’s called “mandatory” because these three entitlement programs must receive a certain amount of federal money every year by federal law. Discretionary spending accounts for all those other things that are generally associated with governance: military, homeland security, transportation, legislative salaries, etc. It’s “discretionary” because the President and Congress must decide what departments get what money every year by way of the budget. Now, back to the point.
Read the above cited text again. Did you catch it? That’s right: Obama’s Debt Commission just said that three liberal entitlement programs consume every red cent of revenue that comes into the federal treasury. Everything else the federal government spends money on, like the military and homeland security, is paid for with money borrowed from the Chinese. This simple point needs to be written on the side of every bus, billboard, and outfield wall until November. Nothing is more important. We’re going bankrupt and liberal welfare policies are solely to blame.
Why does the deficit matter?
The government’s current spending trends ‘will destroy the country from within,’ said the co-chairmen of Obama’s national commission on debt.
These “spending trends” are liberal spending trends. Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security are liberal policies. With healthcare, we can add a fourth socialist albatross that we can’t pay for. See, the problem with socialism isn’t just its degradation of freedom. It’s the fact that it ignores the realities of life. That’s why it’s failed every place it’s been tried, and why it’s failing here.
Is anyone listening though? Well, according to a recent CBS News poll, only 13% of those polled consider Obama’s economic policies to have helped them. Many may not identify Obama’s failing policies as being “liberal,” but many are at least identifying them as failing. Here’s to hoping they continue to remember these policies come November. I have a feeling they will.
Give ’em some credit here because this one took guts. Senate Republicans filibustered a bill (for the third time) that would have extended unemployment benefits beyond 99 weeks. Their reasoning is that at some point, the government faucet must be shut off. Although a little late, they’re absolutely right. The debt and deficits being run up by Democrats must stop before this country enters the death spiral that is making its way through Europe. As the Democrats continue to cry about “hurting those most in need,” someone needed to be the adult, and the Republicans (finally) took the reins.
The unemployment benefits reflect a larger issue that, I believe, is coming to a head: Who are we? People can legitimately argue about things like whether this nation was founded on Christian principles or whether the writers of the Constitution would consider internet porn to be “protected speech.” What cannot be legitimately argued, however, is the fact that this nation was founded on the principle of individual self-determination. That is, the idea that we, as individuals, have the right to make our own breaks. Self-determination does not mean we each have the right to have a car, or a house, or health insurance. It simply means, at least in America, that we all get the inherently equal opportunity to seek those things, if we so choose. If you win, great; if you lose, you can try again. The government’s job is to set the boundaries and get out of the way.
At some point, largely due to the influence of liberalism, that all changed. Now, we don’t argue about whether the government should be providing unemployment benefits, but how much and for how long. We no longer discuss whether anyone actually “deserves” a house, but instead, how much government aid they should receive to get/stay in one. Many of this nation’s citizens not only believe they’re entitled to food, clothing, and shelter, but also the latest cell phone, plasma t.v., and shiny car. And if they can’t afford them, then the government should provide them (or take from those who have them). After all, that’s “fair.”
There are entire classes of people in this country who are supported by the federal government from the cradle to the grave. And I’m not talking about those who are disabled and literally can’t work. I’m talking about able-bodied persons who can work, but don’t. This is drastically different than only a few decades ago. My grandparents, for example, realized that, if they didn’t work, they didn’t eat. That wasn’t an opinion, it was a fact of life. Today, working for food is closer to an option.
Barack Obama’s policies aren’t just childish, they’re drastically accelerating a change in what America fundamentally is. Everyone now has a right to healthcare, whether they can afford it or not. Executives who make too much money should have their salaries cut. Those who got in over their head with the house they bought will be bailed out with what amounts to subsidies. What used to be America has become a nanny state; and while this used to simply be annoying, it’s now becoming disastrous.
While many argue about the cause of the economic collapse, there is no questioning the fact that the liberal ideal of a house for every person who wants one started it. Jimmy Carter’s Community Reinvestment Act, and its various amendments, which compelled banks to give loans to those who couldn’t afford to pay them back certainly had a hand in it. Who gets the blame though? Irresponsible home owners? Of course not. 100% of the guilt was heaped upon Wall Street.
How about the cost of illegal immigration? There is no question that one of the largest contributors to rising health care costs are the illegal immigrants who use emergency rooms as their primary care providers. Should we hold them accountable for being here illegally? Liberals don’t think so. Instead they simply blame the greedy insurance companies for high costs, or farmers for employing the illegals.
Our economy is stuck, with unemployment remaining just south of 10%. What does Obama do about it? He “stimulates” the economy by spending money we don’t have, and sends the overwhelming majority of it to other government employees. Does he cut taxes, which have a much better track record of stimulating growth? Of course not. To make matters worse, his spending will only lead to the eventual raising of taxes on practically everyone that pays them (which, as it turns out, isn’t all that many).
I’ve never been part of the “love it or leave it” crowd. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. But at some point, we need to make a choice. America is one thing, and it is not another. Despite its current appearance, this country has never been about taking money from person A and giving it to person B in the name of fairness. It isn’t about bailing anyone or anything out as a result of bad choices. And it isn’t about punishing success because some have only experienced failure. If we, as a people, want to keep it that way, then a certain percentage of the population should be shown the door.
Bill Press, my second favorite progressive radio talk show host, went a long way to prove why the major newspapers are going under yesterday. While I understand that his piece in the Chicago Tribune was of the “Opinion” variety, shouldn’t someone have to at least make a point based on actual facts for a major newspaper to publish the opinion? Otherwise, the Tribune’s Opinion page becomes just a half-assed blog (unlike this blog of course). Mr. Press begins his piece by offering a story:
Forget what country did it. Consider, first, the facts: armed commandos attack an unarmed ship in international waters, open fire and kill nine civilians, including one American.
O.k. Nice hypothetical. What’s your point?
What do you call that? An act of piracy. It doesn’t matter what country did it. It would have been wrong for Iran to do it. It would have been wrong for North Korea to do it. It was wrong for Israel to do it — and the United States should simply say so.
Oh, i get it. You’re going to base your entire opinion piece on a complete misrepresentation of the facts. First, the “unarmed ship” wasn’t simply floating around in international waters, as you imply. It was running a blockade. Also, the “unarmed ship” at issue wasn’t unarmed. In fact, it was carrying quite a few armed passengers who were known associates of terrorist organizations. Also, the blockade at issue didn’t exist in a vacuum. It was put in place to keep rockets from being brought into Gaza, and being fired at Israel. Now that we have stated the actual facts, lets move on.
There is no justification for Israel’s decision to use military force to prevent humanitarian aid from reaching the shores of Gaza, especially after the U.S. had warned Israel to use “caution and restraint.”
Good grief Bill. “Humanitarian aid?” I’m not denying that the flotilla was carrying some humanitarian aid, but if the true goal was to deliver it, Israel would have been allowed to search its contents before an attempt was made at running the blockade. That wasn’t the goal. Instead, the goal was to make some sort of statement that would result in the international community hating Israel more than they previously did. Based upon the already established feelings of the international community, the statement wasn’t necessary.
Mr. Press, your clear agenda is revealed in your hypocritical statement “there is no justification for Israel’s decision to use military force…especially after the U.S. had warned Israel to use ‘caution and restraint.'” Interesting. You, like all liberals, are usually of the opinion that the U.S. throws it weight around too much on the international scene. Israel, though, is apparently a different story.
Press remembers his liberal leanings soon thereafter, though,
Did passengers on board the Mavi Marmara strike first? Yes. But only with knives, iron pipes and slingshots. And only after armed soldiers boarded and attempted to take over their ship. In response, cornered Israeli troops opened fire in what can only be described as a badly botched military exercise resulting in an unnecessary and excessive use of force.
This is a favorite argument of liberals. If your enemy is only using a knife to try and kill you, you have no right to use a gun. Well, tell that to the guy with the knife to his throat. Of course, I’m sure that if the Israeli soldiers had remembered to pack their sling-shots, everything would have been fine. Sorry Bill. When a group of terrorists decides to try and kill Israeli soldiers with a club, they should expect to be shot at…a lot. I would hope you would support the U.S. military doing the same (although I know you don’t).
After running through a couple of Israeli ivory-tower types who are apparently unhappy with the flotilla raid (which only proves that Israel has its share of self-hating elitist liberals just like the U.S.), Press offers the same argument against the blockade that he’s leveled towards the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan: It’s only going to make your enemies hate you more.
Originally sold as a means of making Israel more secure, the blockade of Gaza, now in place for three years, has had just the opposite effect. It has not made Israel more secure, but it has strengthened the hand of Hamas, caused great suffering among the population of Gaza, and further alienated the Arab world against any accommodation with Israel.
No, Bill, I don’t think it’s possible for the haters of Israel to hate them any more than they already do. Netanyahu, unlike you, realizes that, and has decided self-preservation is more important than Gazans having all the building materials they need. Being that he is in charge of his people’s safety, that’s the right decision. Press ends with the following nonsense:
The only solution is a two-state solution. And the only way to get there is by resumption of peace talks.
Mr. Press, past history has proven that the more Israel gives up to the Palestinians, the more they get shelled with rockets. If I put my war-monger hat on, I would say the only solution is for Israel to continue to kill their enemies before their enemies kill them (which is the same thing our military should continue doing). There can be no peace when one of the two parties doesn’t want it (and that party isn’t Israel).
I don’t get it, I really don’t. Why the hatred for Israel? Are they all anti-Semites? That can’t be…not the “we love diversity” liberals. One has to wonder though, why liberals keep coming down on the side of the terrorists when it comes to Israel.
To summarize Drudge’s headline this morning: it’s working. Obama’s wealth redistribution that is.
Paychecks from private business shrank to their smallest share of personal income in U.S. history during the first quarter of this year, a USA TODAY analysis of government data finds.At the same time, government-provided benefits — from Social Security, unemployment insurance, food stamps and other programs — rose to a record high during the first three months of 2010.
Many liberal talking heads like to criticize the “tea-baggers” for spouting off about socialism without knowing what it is. Well, here you go. Simply put, socialism is taking property from individual A and spreading it out amongst many individuals. That’s what happens whenever the government takes taxes from individual A, and gives them to others by way of Social Security, Medicare, unemployment, etc. (I would argue public education falls into this same category). The more that is taken from individual A and given to everyone else, the more socialist a country becomes. If the government takes everything for public use, then socialism becomes communism. Sometimes socialism can be made to work, as long as the people are content with the high tax rate, and the taxes taken are sufficient to pay for the entitlements. With respect to this country, however, the former (high taxes for entitlements) has never been true philosophically, and now it seems the latter (sufficient taxes to pay for entitlements) is no longer true either.
As University of Michigan economist David Grimes states in the linked article, the current path is not sustainable. The reason is simple: there aren’t enough taxes coming in from private incomes to pay for all the entitlements. Of course, only an advocate of socialism could argue with a straight face that this shift in income — from private income to govt. subsidies — is a laudable result of Obama’s stimulus.
The shift in income shows that the federal government’s stimulus efforts have been effective, says Paul Van de Water, an economist at the liberal Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.
“It’s the system working as it should,” Van de Water says. Government is stimulating growth and helping people in need, he says. As the economy recovers, private wages will rebound, he says.
Regardless of one’s position on the propriety of government entitlements, there is simply no credible argument for government spending equating to growth. In fact, the stimulus proves the argument to be wrong. The government spent billions trying to stimulate the economy into creating jobs, and it has been an abject failure.
The reason government spending doesn’t stimulate the economy is very simple, and has been repeated by this blog countless times: the government doesn’t have any of its own money. Any money it uses to “stimulate” industry must be taken from the industrious. Any money taken from the industrious is money that doesn’t go to job creation. Van de Water’s contention that once the economy improves, private wages will rebound is true, assuming the economy improves. If the government keeps spending money it doesn’t have however, it will need to take more from the people. Taking ever increasing amounts from the people that work, and giving it to people that don’t, won’t stimulate anything. Instead, it will simply make those that work stop, and those that don’t work depend on the government for their sustenance. But then, maybe that’s the whole point.
Let’s hope not. We certainly don’t need another Chamberlain appeasing another Hitler; although I fear we are witnessing it now.
I don’t listen to much conservative talk radio, because I find many of them to be over the top (I’m looking at you Beck). Instead, during my hour and a half drive to and from work, I listen to progressive talk radio. Why? Because they’re nuts and it keeps me awake.
This morning, Bill Press delighted in reflecting upon Utah’s ouster of Republican incumbent Senator Bennett. “Republicans eating their own.” I don’t know how to analyze this assertion because I don’t know what a Republican is anymore. Bennett’s ouster is certainly a victory for our representative democracy, however.
Senator Bennett, and other incumbents like him, was a problem; and not because he voted in favor of the bailout. He was a problem because he was a three-term Senator. When someone is a three-term Senator, they are no longer a representative, they are a monarch. Senator Bennett, and others like him, are the reason why we need term limits.
Senator Bennett ignored his constituents: the people of Utah. He was also a member of Congress who helped us arrive at our current predicament. While not a current member of the majority, he was part of the Republican majority that led to Nancy Pelosi becoming third in line for the presidency. Unfortunately, he, and others like him, became entrenched in Washington, and ignored everyone except the special interest groups and lobbyists.
Neither Senator Bennett, nor any Senator, should have been able to get past two terms. I have a difficult time believing that the Founders, them being part-time politicians, would have been in favor of the Ted Kennedy’s, and Arlen Specter’s, and the John McCain’s of America, men who have become full-time (and life-time) politicians. These men maintain their position not because of their popularity, but because of their war-chest.
A little, or a lot, of blood-letting i government is good. Individual Congressman have failed in representing their constituencies for too long, and hopefully the American people will wake up and take this opportunity to do their jobs: vote.